IS QUEEN OF HEARTS A SEX GAME?No. Queen of Hearts is a loosely romance-focused game, which can include sex for adult characters, but can also mean holding hands and exchanging gifts for nine-year-olds. Furthermore, participating in the romantic aspect of the game is not a requirement.
WHAT KIND OF GENRES DO YOU CLASSIFY THIS GAME AS?Romance, worldbuilding, and action. There will be events focusing on romance, numerous opportunities to expand and explore the setting, and plots that invite participation in the form of combat or other involvement. There are also elements of fantasy and mythology as well as occasional crack, although the latter will not dominate enough to prevent serious interactions. Horrific things may happen at times, but not often -- or graphically -- enough for Queen of Hearts to be considered a horror game.
DOES THE GAME HAVE AN OVERARCHING PLOT?Queen of Hearts is not intensively focused on a specific driving plot and does not have a set ending. It does, however, have a complex backstory and cosmology driven by mythology, mysticism, and metaphysics. There is or will be an explanation for as many aspects of the game as possible, even if it's not revealed at first, and it will all be in keeping with the themes laid out above (that is to say, we won't suddenly reveal that it's all a computer simulation or that they were in Limbo all along). This information will be revealed piece by piece as the game runs. If the game continues for long enough, the characters will eventually be able to use that knowledge to determine their fates and that of the world around them.
IS THERE ANYTHING ABOUT ALL THOSE METAPHYSICS I NEED TO KNOW IN ORDER TO PROPERLY PLAY MY CHARACTER?No. Your character is your character. She may wind up asking herself existential questions after some revelations (or she may not), but she is ultimately the person you applied to play.
CAN YOU GIVE US ANY REASSURANCES?The food is not people, and the people are not tomatoes.
WHAT KINDS OF POSTS GO WHERE?♡ In-character action posts or Vine posts (see below!) go to queenofheartsrp.
♡ In-character prose logs go to queenoflogs.
♡ Out-of-character introductions, hiatuses, drops, plot posts, and mod announcements go to queenofooc.
♡ General game-related spam posts, notes, memes, and open RP announcements go to queenofwhat.
HOW DO I TAG MY POSTS?When your character is accepted into the game, the mods will make a tag for you in the format character name | username. Tag all posts your character makes or comments on in queenofheartsrp and queenoflogs with this tag. Additionally, action posts and Vine posts should be tagged with ! action, ! video, ! audio or ! text, depending on the type of post. Dropped characters have tags preceded by a dagger (†). If it's been more than 48 hours since your character was accepted and you still haven't been assigned a tag, let the mods know and we'll fix that right away.
HOW DO I TAKE A HIATUS?Please leave a comment to this post with the information requested there. Optionally, post to queenofooc using the ! hiatus tag. The standard hiatus limit is one month. If you find you need more time than that, talk to the mods and we'll see what we can do.
WHAT HAPPENS TO MY CHARACTER WHEN I TAKE A HIATUS?You have a few different options. One is that your character goes back to her home; you can use this to canon update her if you want (see below for more on canon updates) or you can say she wasn't there long enough for anything to happen. Another option is that she gets trapped in a time warp in the wild places: a few minutes can pass while she's exploring there, but she can emerge to find that a week or more has gone by in the Gardens. Finally, if nothing big is going on for your character, you can simply put her on autopilot and hand out godmode rights to other players of your choice.
HOW DO I DROP A CHARACTER?Comment to this post with the information requested there. Optionally, post to queenofooc using the ! drop tag.
WHAT HAPPENS TO A CHARACTER WHO LEAVES THE GARDENS BECAUSE OF A HIATUS, CANON UPDATE, OR DROP?If a character who is alive in her canon (or from her canon point) leaves the Gardens, she disappears in a sudden shower of rose petals. If a character who is dead in her canon (and from her canon point) leaves the Gardens, she disappears in a sudden shower of lily petals. None of the NPCs will explain the meaning behind this difference.
HOW DO I CANON UPDATE MY CHARACTER?You drop the mods a line in this post describing the update. If we feel it's minor enough, we'll give you the go-ahead right there. If we feel it involves a significant change to your character, we'll ask you to fill out an abbreviated version of the application again, providing us with a new personality description and first-person sample. In both cases, you can have your character leave the Gardens before receiving mod approval if you wish, but she may not return from the update until approval has been given. If it's declined while your character is out of the Gardens and you don't want to try again for approval, you can have her return before anything significant happens in her canon.
DOES THE GAME HAVE AN AIM CHAT?Sure! It's at sappho plays here.
WHERE IS MY CHARACTER NOW?She's in the Gardens, joined by a number of other girls and women, and watched over by a mysterious presence known only as the Queen of Hearts.
WHO ELSE IS IN THE GARDENS?A number of animals and several other peculiar female presences known as incarnae who seem to be subordinate to the Queen of Hearts.
WHY IS EVERYONE FEMALE?No one's telling.
IS THERE SOME KIND OF NETWORK THAT CHARACTERS CAN COMMUNICATE ON?In the Gardens, characters are expected to live off the earth. Technology is limited to whatever they wake up with and whatever they imagine out of material from the wild places. But that doesn't mean there isn't a kind of network they can use to communicate. That's where the Vine comes in. Stretching all over the Gardens and vanishing out into the wild places are the interconnected offshoots of a system of vines that emerges from the ruins at the center of the Gardens. Touching one the right way will cause a scroll to unfurl from it and a pen to be offered you; speaking the right request to it will cause a leafy megaphone to sprout forth and await your input; making the appropriate gesture will cause the vines to twine around a newly-appeared mirror that will then record you and your surroundings. Touch it in another way, speak a different request to it, make another gesture, and you'll be granted access to the things other inhabitants of the Gardens have written and recorded. All of this happens in real time. You can go for as long as you like without checking the Vine, though, so just because there's a new entry on the Vine at queenofheartsrp doesn't necessarily mean your character has to have seen it immediately. The Vine may be commanded to keep a message away from a particular person or people, or only give it to a particular person or people. However, it seems to have some rudimentary mind of its own, and the more of a rapport you've struck up with it, the more attention it will pay to your commands--or the more authority you'll have to break through other people's commands. How do you bond with the Vine? Well, it may be green and leafy, but it's kind of like a person! It enjoys gifts (although who knows what it does with them), likes attention (try singing it songs or telling it stories), and appreciates it when you say thank you or please. Unfortunately for the denizens of the Gardens, though, the Vine's primitive intelligence is occasionally a mischievous one. It may or may not interpret accidental touches and words or gestures meant for someone else (or no one in particular) as commands to start recording...
ARE THERE OTHER FEATURES OF THE VINE?As of early April 2011, two new functions have been added: a hypertext system and primitive search capabilities. The former is reliable and usable by anyone at any time--simply browse through the scrolls and recordings of the Vine to whatever you want to link to, then tag a word or phrase in your current post with it. The search function fluctuates; it can reasonably reliably be used to find posts made by a specific person, but searching for words or concepts throws up mixed results.
ARE THERE COMMUNICATION BARRIERS BETWEEN CHARACTERS WHO SPEAK DIFFERENT LANGUAGES?No. Different languages will be automatically translated while in the Gardens.
IT SEEMS LIKE THERE'S A LOT OF READING INVOLVED ICly; WHAT IF A CHARACTER IS BLIND?In that case, one of two things will happen. If the character knows Braille or another touch-based language, the scrolls given to her will be in Braille or whatever tactile language she knows. If she doesn't know anything like that, when she taps the scrolls, a voice will read them aloud to her.
WHAT'S WITH THE ANIMALS?There are a number of different animals roaming the Gardens--some what you might expect to see in a pretty garden, some...not. Each seems to serve some kind of purpose or behave in a certain way. Cats: Your guides and providers of information. They will lead the way to known destinations within the Gardens, bring you scrolls explaining aspects of life here, and appear to lead you back if you are lost. If questioned about the deeper nature of the Gardens or the presences that dwell in them, they will yawn, stretch, and saunter away, or maybe just curl up and go to sleep. Songbirds: Treat you like a Disney princess. They maintain the day-to-day workings of the Gardens and clean up after their inhabitants. Yes, your character will at some point witness canaries making her bed. If asked, they will also provide meals (even if it takes four of them to carry a plate), but otherwise they will assume your character can find and prepare food herself. Bears: Yes, there are bears in the Gardens. But they won't hurt you--unless you wreak havoc or inflict serious violence on other inhabitants. They seem to be guardians and police force for the Gardens. They patrol the grounds making sure wanton violence, destruction, and mayhem don't occur. Foxes: It's hard to tell what the foxes do. They're all over the Gardens and they're surprisingly friendly, but they don't seem to serve a purpose the way the other animals do. Sometimes, they'll beckon an inhabitant to follow them somewhere, only to flee as soon as she encounters someone else along the way. Rabbits: Troublemakers. They seem to exist solely to make everyone's life difficult. They will chew holes in your stuff, sneak up to your table and nibble on your meals, dig through your carefully organized things, and otherwise be nuisances. However, it must be said that they are extremely cute, every last one of them. Wolves: Rarely seen inside the Gardens unless creatures from the wild places get farther in than usual. They're quite prevalent out on the edges, though, where they busily patrol and venture out into the wild places to take on any monsters that threaten the Gardens. The opening of new lands is always preceded by packs of wolves venturing out into the wild places. Snakes: Might as well be doctors. They appear with medication if a character needs it and show up to check on injured parties. Whenever a character wakes up from death, she'll find herself surrounded by snakes.
CAN I TALK TO THE ANIMALS, IF MY CHARACTER HAS THAT KIND OF POWER?If your character has the power to talk to animals, she'll be able to have limited conversations with the ones in the Gardens. She'll find, however, that they're very evasive and cryptic. Questions about their behavior will be met with some variant of "it's just what we do," and they seem to be more interested in performing these "duties" than in having conversations. There are some exceptions. The songbirds will gladly chatter your ear off about how much fun they have cleaning up after the inhabitants of the Gardens; the cats will murmur cryptic adages and fables. And the foxes would love to hear about your romantic troubles...
CAN I KILL THE ANIMALS?Sure. They're just animals. But it's probably a bad idea. No matter what kind of animal you take out your wrath on, someone is going to get very angry. In OOC terms, if you attack one of the animals above, expect IC repercussions up to and including serious injury to your character. We won't kill her without your permission, but persistent killing of the Gardens' animals (outside of the game birds and fish in the orchard) will not end well for her. The exact consequences will vary depending on what animal it is, but at the very least you can expect other animals of the same type to become very hostile to her. In short, you can do this, but make sure the mods are aware of it and be prepared for your character to receive a special visitor and some disturbing roleplay to follow.
ARE THERE ANY MORE DETAILS WE SHOULD KNOW ABOUT THE ANIMALS?Let's see: the animals are smarter than one would expect, as necessary to do their duties (and as necessary to be a nuisance -- the rabbits will avoid simple traps, for example), but are not apparently at a human level of sentience. Additionally, aside from the game fowl in the orchard, there are no other animals in the Gardens...currently.
HOW DOES DEATH WORK IN THE GARDENS?Death is not permanent in the Gardens, but it comes with a price, and that price gets steeper the more often you die. The first time a character dies is almost a freebie. She wakes up as she did upon first arriving in the Gardens, but surrounded by snakes. One snake will suddenly bite her, and with that bite comes the knowledge that if she dies again, there will be greater consequences. The second time a character dies, the punishment is light. She wakes up again surrounded by snakes, but this time, there's no biting. There's only a sense of loss, for one of the following has vanished: ♡ A significant part of her powers (if she has them).
♡ A sense (such as sight or hearing).
♡ A highly significant memory (such as the past ten years of her life before coming to the Gardens, or her childhood, or the reason she chose to become a superhero). After anywhere from two days to a week, a snake will slither up and bite your character, and what she lost will return. The third time a character dies, the consequences increase. She wakes up surrounded by snakes, once again with a sense of loss, and what she loses comes once more from the above list (although it does not have to be the same thing as before). This time, though, the loss lasts for anywhere from a week and a day to two weeks. The fourth time a character dies, it's the same as before, except this time, the loss lasts anywhere from two weeks to a month, at your discretion. However, with the snakebite that returns what she lost comes new knowledge: next time what is lost will not come back. If you want to have your character die a fifth or further time, contact the mods first, because this time the loss will be permanent.
WHAT HAPPENS IF MY CHARACTER BREAKS THE IN-CHARACTER RULES?In-character consequences! The Queen or one of the incarnae will settle the score with her, depending on what she's done. The punishment may range from mild to horrific, so if your character is going to do something particularly dramatic, you might want to contact the mods first. There is a special punishment reserved for those who prove themselves to be truly, dangerously disruptive to the Gardens, but it hasn't come to light yet...so to speak.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO BREAK A RULE AND NOT GET CAUGHT?Yes, it's possible--the Queen and the incarnae watch the Gardens at all times, but they see different things, and they don't all get along. Harm caused to any animal will be noticed by an incarna, but if it's done secretively, the person responsible may not be located. Harm done to people will be noticed by the Queen, but similarly, if it happens somewhere she's not watching, the culprit may escape notice. However, these are rare cases and would result in consequences for the entire game, so if you're planning anything along these lines, please get in touch with the mods first so we can work out what's going to happen.
CAN I CHANGE OR ADD TO THE SETTING WITH MY CHARACTER?Absolutely; in fact, characters will be expected to. The way to do this is to take wild stuff (material from the wild places), bring it back into the Gardens, and simply imagine it into whatever object or place you want it to become. A character can't use this method to create something she's not familiar with (at least, not yet...), but she can use it to create large areas or buildings that she knows from home. The Gardens expand as they need to, and once a place has been created in this way, it will become permanent and be added to the destinations a character can ask the cats to guide her to. It'll take a few days to "settle," though, so until then, watch out for wildcards... In OOC terms, you are free to make objects at will from wild stuff, so long as you don't godmode with them or use them to cause mass destruction (ask the mods first if you're aiming for the latter, as it would count as a plot with game-wide ramifications). You're also encouraged to make places from wild stuff, but when you do, make sure to leave the name and description of the new place in this post so the mods can add it to the list of player-created places.
WHAT IF I WANT TO MAKE SOMETHING REALLY BIG OR COMPLICATED FROM THE WILD STUFF, LIKE A GUNDAM?You can try. You'll probably get your Gundam, or your magical library, or your space cruiser. But it almost certainly won't work as you remember. The Gundam might shoot harmless rainbows instead of laser beams, the magical library might only have books in a nonexistent language (even if they glow with magic), the space cruiser might generate flowers instead of a warp field. In other words, if your character tries to imagine something overly complicated or with potentially game-breaking effects, it probably will not go as planned. But you're welcome to attempt it and have fun with the unexpected results. If you think your character would have the concentration, willpower, and/or memory to be able to correctly imagine something particularly complex or detailed, talk to the mods about it and we'll see about working something out.
CAN LIVING THINGS BE MADE FROM THE WILD STUFF?Plants and very small wildlife (such as insects and little fish, but not squirrels or dogs) may be made from the wild stuff, but nothing more advanced as far as living things go.
WHAT ARE WILDCARDS?Wildcards are the effects that result from exposure to the wild places and the stuff that comes from them. They can be strange visions, mind-altering influences, or simply funny happenings. They can afflict your character alone, or any character who comes within an affected zone. Some examples include the following: your character must speak in rhyme for two hours; an elaborate mirage of a village inhabited entirely by anthropoid ducks pops up; your character grows rainbow butterfly wings or cat ears and a tail; your character's hair, clothes, or other possessions or body parts come alive with their own will. By all means come up with your own ideas, though! The only one that's not allowed is genderswapping characters into males. Posts involving wildcards do not have to be run by mods first, so long as they are confined to a single post involving only those who tag it or a short span of time (a few days or less) involving one character. If, for example, a character wants to scatter wild stuff all over the Gardens and see what happens, that would be considered a game-wide plot and would require mod permission.
SO CHARACTERS CAN'T ESCAPE BY TRYING TO LEAVE THE EDGES OF THE GARDENS; WHAT IF THEY TRY TO GO UP OR DOWN?Going up by flight will eventually run you into an invisible barrier forming the sky; digging down will eventually, after a couple basements' worth of space, run you up against solid, unbreakable rock. Standard energy blasts, superstrength-powered attacks, and the like will have no effect on either the sky or earth barriers. However, if your character has a power that is specifically designed to pierce barriers, there will be some effect. If she uses it on the sky, it will temporarily open to reveal a freakish realm of inhuman, incomprehensible colors and light, at which point she'll be afflicted with a wildcard (see above) and knocked back down. If she uses it on the lower barrier, nothing will seem to happen--it's stronger than the one above--but she may get a bad feeling, and that night, she'll have particularly potent nightmares.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO GET PREGNANT IN THE GARDENS BY ANY MEANS?No. Women with physically male bodies may show up from time to time, and there may be species that reproduce by parthenogenesis in some canons, but pregnancy does not happen. This question will be freely answered ICly by the scrolls or incarnae if a character asks.
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR IN AN APPLICATION?Two main things: understanding and voice. That means that we're most concerned about how well you can grasp your character's nature and how well you can convey her particular style of communicating.
IF VOICE IS SO IMPORTANT, WHY ARE YOU ALLOWING LINKS TO dear_mun AND DRESSING ROOMS FOR SAMPLES?Because we believe that it's easier to show voice in a freeform roleplay environment than in a generic "where am I? What's going on?" introductory sample.
WHY DON'T YOU REQUIRE A THIRD-PERSON SAMPLE?Third-person samples often wind up being nothing more than a rehash of personality in prose form. We don't want that. We assume that if you can show us her personality in the relevant section and her voice in the first-person sample section, you can combine the two to write action and logs for your character.
WILL ANY APPLICATIONS FALL UNDER ADDITIONAL SCRUTINY?Yes. As this is a game with a focus on romance and pairings, applications for real people or places will be held to high standards out of respect. You can still apply for them, but you'll have to put in extra effort to show us you plan to handle them respectfully. This includes characters from series such as Hetalia and After School Charisma as well as historical dramas. Also take note of our rules on canon OCs, below.
IF SOMEONE ELSE HAS RESERVED A CHARACTER, CAN I ALSO PUT IN AN APPLICATION FOR THAT CHARACTER AS A CHALLENGE APP?No. Only the person who has reserved the character may apply for that character unless or until a) their reservation expires or b) their application is rejected.
WHAT'S UP WITH AGE LIMITS ON CHARACTERS?Currently this game does not have a hard and fast age limit for its characters. Different canons handle romance in ways appropriate to different age groups; in some series, eleven-year-olds fall in love and date. However, if you do apply for a younger character, keep in mind that her opportunities for romantic CR will be restricted to tamer fluff and limited to her age group. Mods will monitor whether players are inappropriately sexualizing characters in pre- and early adolescence, so keep it clean.
WHAT ABOUT CHARACTERS WHOSE AGES AREN'T CLEAR OR ARE DIFFERENT FROM THEIR APPARENT AGE?Characters with extreme gaps between their apparent and actual age will be considered to fall into the age group that they look like, although if they're mentally more mature, romantic relationships with older characters will be a more viable possibility than normal. Characters who are only slightly older than they look will be grouped into the age group they actually are--anime and comics art can be fickle and subjective in this regard, and it will be left to players to decide what they're comfortable with. If the character's age is truly unclear, it will be left to player discretion, with the character's mental age being used to help determine the best fit for physical age as well.
WHAT IF A CHARACTER'S CANON HAS EXPLICIT SEXUAL CONTENT INVOLVING MINORS?We don't want to get banned, so she's still going to have to stick to age-appropriate RP in the game.
CAN I AGE MY CHARACTER UP IF SHE'S THAT YOUNG?A limited amount of "aging up" is allowed. You may choose to raise a character's age from eleven or under to anywhere from twelve to fourteen, as you determine appropriate. This is to give young characters an opportunity for a wider pool of romantic CR, not to allow smut or other age-inappropriate activities.
ARE THERE SPECIFIC AGE GROUPS THAT EVENTS WILL BE TAILORED TO?For the most part, we'd prefer not to separate characters into discrete groups based on age, but to make it easier to customize events and give players a better idea of what's allowable, we do have a set of age groups. The "child" age group is eleven and under; the "preteen" age group is twelve and thirteen; the "teenager" age group is fourteen to seventeen; and the "adult" age group is eighteen and up. Characters won't be expected to stay strictly within their age group for romantic CR (a fourteen-year-old can date a sixteen-year-old, for example), but will be expected to keep the gaps reasonable, especially for younger characters (a twelve-year-old shouldn't be dating an eighteen-year-old, but a nineteen-year-old can date a thirty-year-old if she really wants).
WHAT CAN I DO WITH ANIMAL OR OTHERWISE NON-HUMANOID CHARACTERS?You can give them a humanoid form. How humanized that form is will be up to you, so long as she's basically humanoid. How you deal with icons will also be up to you. If the character never speaks or narrates her thoughts in canon, you're also welcome to keep her mute even in her new human form.
WHAT IF MY CHARACTER IS HUMANOID, BUT NOT ENTIRELY HUMAN?That's fine! She can stay that way in the Gardens. No, you don't even need to give her sex organs if she doesn't have them. This is a romance game, not a sex one.
WHAT IF MY CHARACTER HAS SUPERNATURAL POWERS THAT MAKE IT DIFFICULT FOR HER TO EXIST IN THIS SETTING OR INTERACT WITH OTHER CHARACTERS?This will be left up to player discretion. As the Gardens become more fleshed out and offer more indoor places for vampires to lurk during the day, people may want to apply for vampires with their weakness to sun, for example, but until then it might be difficult, so the option to do away with it is there. Alternately, it can be lessened rather than completely removed: ghosts may only be intangible some of the time, but can become solid for romantic events; vampires may only need to drink blood once a week instead of every day. Please note in the abilities section of your application if you're choosing to remove a weakness. This option is not an excuse to make your characters invulnerable, but rather a way of making it easier to interact with the setting and gain CR.
CAN MY CHARACTER KEEP HER POWERS IF SHE HAS THEM?Yes. Most powers will be intact upon arrival in the Gardens--they'll just fail to work if you try to use them to escape the Gardens. Flight will only go so high, teleportation will dump you at the edge of the wild places, super drilling powers will hit unbreakable rock eventually (see above for details on some of this). Even particularly destructive powers will be left untouched, although IC punishment will be doled out if your character uses them in a way the Queen of Hearts or the incarnae consider inappropriate. If your character has a power that can be used to godmode or infomode other characters, such as telepathy or mind control, it will work only sporadically in the Gardens. In other words, you'll be required to put up a permissions post and respect other players' wishes in regards to how it can affect their characters. As far as that goes...
IF MY CHARACTER HAS NO IC POWERS TO DEFEND AGAINST GODMODING POWERS LIKE MIND CONTROL, AM I REQUIRED TO GIVE PERMISSION FOR THEM TO AFFECT HER?No, you are not. If you're not comfortable with powers that would godmode your character, you may simply choose to have them fail around your character: the Gardens are treacherous about powers like that. Be reasonable, though. If we catch people using this clause to make their characters unstoppable and invulnerable, you'll be asked to tone it down.
WHAT POWERS WILL NEED TO BE TONED DOWN FOR THE SETTING?Most powers will be fine as-is, but if your character has heavy-duty reality-warping, mind control, or instakill powers, you'll probably need to nerf them a bit. Keep in mind that powers can't be used to escape the Gardens, radically alter the nature of the Gardens, divine the secrets of the Gardens (you'll have to wait for plots for that!), defeat the Queen or incarnae (well, maybe...), or force actions upon characters whose players don't wish for them, and you should be good.
WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT POWERS THAT RELY ON SUBSTANCES UNIQUE TO THE CHARACTER'S WORLD, SUCH AS SOME KIND OF MANA?They're still usable in the Gardens. It might take your character a little while to adjust, but she'll get the hang of it soon enough. How and why do these powers still work? No one will say.
WHAT ABOUT POWERS THAT RELY ON OTHER BEINGS?So long as those other beings are not applicable in and of themselves, they may be kept when a character arrives in the Gardens. At the moment, if those other beings are male, they will be temporarily "sealed" and the character unable to access them, but once genderswapping becomes an option, they will be available as females. This ruling applies to such things as Pokemon and summons from Final Fantasy, but not such things as Servants from the Fate/whatever series, as they are full characters themselves. Note that while there are currently no OOC restrictions on the power of these beings unless they involve godmoding other characters (in which case a permissions post will be required), destructive use of them may have in-character repercussions.
ON THAT NOTE, WHAT ABOUT PETS, COMPANION ROBOTS, AND THE LIKE?Again, so long as the creature doesn't have enough personality to be applicable itself, a character may arrive in the Gardens with her pet, faithful robot, familiar, or other NPC companion. However, if said being is distinctly male, it will become female in the Gardens.
ARE ORIGINAL CHARACTERS ALLOWED?Yes, but the application will be more detailed. You'll be required to explain the setting your character comes from and give a very detailed account of any powers she might have.
WHAT'S YOUR POLICY ON CANON OCs?Completely original characters who hail from an established setting are not allowed; the potential to muddle the network of relationships and plot that makes up the canon is too great. Very minor characters, however, such as those who have only appeared in bonuses or in brief background appearances, may be applied for as canon OCs on the condition that they seem likely to remain minor characters for the foreseeable future (i.e., you can apply for that girl who shows up at the end of every episode to make a brief comment on the events prior as a canon OC, but not the character who we know nothing about because she just appeared in this issue). These applications will be scrutinized closely to make sure that they spell out a complete character who is consistent with those established in the canon as well as true to her own few appearances. Applicants wanting to play such characters will be expected to back their interpretations up with as many details from canon as possible, a player-created history that meshes with the events of the canon as well as what few details are given for the character in question, and a solid voice in the samples provided. RPG protagonists with very loosely-defined personalities will also be counted as canon OCs and their personality and sample sections closely scrutinized, but you'll be allowed to link to a summary of the game for history, since we're not interested in forcing applicants to type out the entire plot of a game from the point of view of the main character. Just make sure you give at least a brief summary of your perspective on the character's motivations during the game. To clarify: applicants may not apply for entirely original characters in an established setting. That definition of "canon OC" is not allowed here at Queen of Hearts. To be applicable, a character must have at least some screen time or notable references within their canon.
MAY I APPLY FOR TWO CHARACTERS FROM THE SAME CANON?Yes, so long as they're not too closely intertwined in that canon. If you're unsure whether you'd be able to apply for a given character while playing another from the same source, check with the mods first. In addition, you may not play more than two characters from the same canon.
WHAT ABOUT ALTERNATE UNIVERSE VERSIONS OF A CHARACTER?If you can prove using details given by the creator that the AU version (first) is intended as a separate character and (second) has a substantially different personality, you may apply for her as a canon character or a canon OC. Please note that only canon AUs are allowed: you can apply for Haruka Armitage from My-Otome instead of just Haruka Suzushiro from My-HiME, but not "Buffy Summers if she'd been a vampire princess instead of a vampire slayer." The exception to this is genderswap AUs; see below.
WHEN IS PLAYER-TO-PLAYER COMMUNICATION REQUIRED BEFORE APPLYING?We don't strictly require you to contact other players before applying for any characters. However, we strongly encourage it in two cases: one, when you're applying for an alternate-universe version of a character already in the game; and two, when you're applying for a canon love interest of a character already in the game. In these situations, it's best for everyone involved if you find out first how the other player feels about your intention to apply.
WHAT DO I DO IF I WANT TO INCLUDE SOMETHING IN MY APPLICATION THAT AFFECTS ANOTHER PLAYER'S CHARACTER?If it's 100% canon, there are no problems here. For example, "Shizuru is in love with Natsuki" would be fine even if there's already a Natsuki, since that's stated outright in the canon. However, "Shizuru's favorite hobby is taking pictures of Natsuki in lingerie" would need to be cleared with Natsuki's player first, since that's not stated in canon. This applies particularly to canon OCs. If you're applying for such a character, contacting players of other characters from the canon about what their relationships with your intended character are like is a good idea. If you apply with an idea of the relationship that contradicts the headcanon of existing players without working it out with them first, that will be considered godmoding.
CAN WE CARRY OVER DEVELOPMENT FROM PREVIOUS GAMES OR MUSEBOXES?This is a tricky issue. Our ruling on it is that it is acceptable only in the case of original characters, and only if two additional factors are met: one, that the development can be worked seamlessly into their history somehow, and two, that it doesn't involve canon characters.
WHAT IF MY CHARACTER'S ACTUAL CANON, NOT JUST HER SCREENTIME, IS FRAGMENTARY OR EXTREMELY MINIMAL?Then you'll be required to apply for her as a completely original character, which means writing up her history and setting in detail. The character will be considered to be inspired by her appearances in "canon"; it's up to you to turn that inspiration into a full character. This applies mainly to characters who appear in music videos, but could also be applied to, for example, a character who appears in a series of paintings but is never given dialogue, or any other character who has the basis for a personality but no coherent history or established setting.
CAN I MIX DIFFERENT VERSIONS OF A CANON (FOR EXAMPLE, BOOK AND MOVIE, OR MANGA AND ANIME) WHEN APPLYING?No. If the two versions are very similar, you may take inspiration from both, but if you want to use concrete canon facts from one, you have to apply entirely from that version.
THIS GAME IS IN ENGLISH, BUT WHAT IF THE CANON I WANT TO APPLY FROM ISN'T AVAILABLE IN ENGLISH?Then it depends on whether it will be available in English in the foreseeable future. If a translation is unlikely to be readily available any time soon (for example, an obscure French comic, or every third Tales game), you're free to apply away from whatever point you wish and play as you'd like so long as you personally have an understanding of the canon. If, however, it's likely to be released in English in some accessible form in the foreseeable future, until some time after its release in English (see below) you should cut and warn for any spoilers you may reveal.
WHAT ARE YOUR RULES ON APPLYING OR REVEALING SPOILERS FROM NEWLY RELEASED CANONS?You're allowed to do so, but until a certain period of time has passed, you'll need to cut and warn for spoilers. Use common sense as to what this time period should be: it takes people longer to read a book or play a long video game than to watch a new episode of television, for example.
WHAT'S YOUR POLICY ON PLAYED-BYS (PBs) USED FOR ICONS?If you're playing an original character or a genderswapped male character who lacks enough art to make icons, you may use a PB. Live-action PBs are preferred, especially lesser-known ones, but if you really aren't comfortable with that, characters from more obscure anime, manga, and comics may be used. If you're going to go with that option, talk to the mods to determine what counts as obscure enough. We'll be willing to help you out with suggestions as well.
IF I GET REJECTED, WHEN CAN I APPLY AGAIN?Applicants who get rejected are required to wait at least two weeks before applying again (it's fine to reserve or extend an existing reserve within this period). This is to make sure they've thought through all the necessary changes to their application, not to keep them out. If you get rejected twice, you need to wait a month before applying again. If you get rejected three times, you need to wait two months before applying again. Unfortunately, if you get rejected after that, you'll be barred from applying for that particular character in the future.
CAN I APPLY FOR A GENDERSWAPPED MALE CHARACTER?Yes, so long as you follow the specified rules for doing so.
HOW DOES GENDERSWAPPING MALE CHARACTERS WORK?If you wish to apply for a genderswapped male character, you'll need to create an alternate universe where he has always been female. There will be a separate application than the usual one to fill out for such characters with some different sections. You'll be expected to take the difference into account in her personality. The change in gender doesn't have to (and shouldn't!) change everything, but since girls and boys are influenced by society in different ways, she shouldn't be a carbon copy of the canon male character, either. If the result of changing your male character's history so that he has always been female is a radically different character or one you're not sure you want to play, you may want to reconsider applying for him here.
WHAT DO I DO ABOUT ICONS FOR GENDERSWAPPED MALE CHARACTERS?You have several different options, depending on your character's source material. For characters from a drawn medium, the ideal one is to use canon or official art of the character as a woman, but of course that's not going to be an option the vast majority of the time. For characters from live-action sources, you can choose a female PB who looks as much like their male self as possible. This is also an option for characters from other media as well, if you'd prefer. Other options are using especially androgynous-looking official art or genderswapped fanart (we prefer that you try to credit it, but we understand this isn't always possible). You should not use characters from popular canons as PBs; the potential for confusion is too high. Try to take this into account if selecting a live-action PB as well and aim for the more obscure ladies rather than those who play characters likely to be applied for in the future. Finally, if your character is already particularly feminine-looking, you may show the mods pictures and ask if it's okay to just use regular canon art. We may well say yes.
WHAT IF MY CHARACTER IS STRAIGHT (OR ASEXUAL) IN CANON? DOES SHE BECOME A LESBIAN UPON ARRIVING IN THE GARDENS?Not exactly. If you don't feel that your character canonically has enough romantic or sexual attraction to women for a relationship to work out, then once she enters the Gardens, her orientation will begin to shift slightly so that she is more open to the possibility of a relationship with another woman. The rate at which this happens and how your character reacts when she realizes it's happening is up to you. Just try to be reasonable about it. Note that if you're really not interested in romance with a given character, this doesn't have to happen to them. It's intended as a device for enabling romance for those who are interested in it, not as a way to force sex or romantic interactions upon the characters.
ARE INTERSEXED, TRANSGENDERED, AND OTHERWISE GENDER-BINARY-BREAKING CHARACTERS ALLOWED? HOW DO YOU HANDLE THEM?They are allowed! However, if a physically intersexed character identifies as male, he will need to be rewritten as an AU version that's always been female. If your character does not identify at all as one gender or the other, they will find themselves leaning slightly towards female in this game. The same goes for genderqueer characters who identify as male-ish: they will need to be rewritten as identifying as female-ish to the same degree. Intersexed characters will not be physically changed in the game. If your character is a trans woman, you can choose how far (if at all) her body transitions to female upon arrival in the Gardens, but her gender identification remains female. Transgendered male characters are not allowed as-is, but if you can come up with an AU where they are female (whether cis or trans) but still retain their core personality and background, you're welcome to apply for that version. If you do try this, please take care to be sensitive with your material. This is a complicated subject, so if you have questions or want your intersexed/genderqueer/transgendered character to have a different experience to the ones described above, please email the mods before applying. We'll try to be flexible. The important thing isn't what your character's body is like, but that they psychologically identify at least loosely as female.
WHAT ABOUT CHARACTERS WHO ARE GENDERBENT IN CANON?We are cautiously allowing such characters on the condition that they must psychologically identify as female at the point in canon they come from. Being put into a female body is not enough; you'll be expected to provide evidence that the character you want to apply for thinks of herself as a woman now too.
WHAT IF MY CHARACTER HAS MULTIPLE SELVES, AND NOT ALL OF THEM ARE FEMALE?This is an "ask the mods" situation, but most of the time we'll allow it on the grounds that the male aspects/facets/selves become female upon arriving in the Gardens. If you're not comfortable with that, you may choose to have them sealed away instead.
WHAT IF MY CHARACTER'S GENDER IS AMBIGUOUS OR ARGUABLE?So long as you can provide solid evidence drawn from canon or facts presented by the creator that your character identifies as female, you may apply for her. Please comment to this post with any general questions about the game or setting you may have, and the mods will do their best to answer them.